My name is Elaine Knight, and I live in south Alabama. We (my husband and myself) inherited our property from my grandparents, and we named it "Knight Oaks." This is where we live, work and play.

I love to garden and my husband loves to hunt and fish, so our property is perfect for our retirement years. We have two children and five grandchildren, and it is so much fun to watch our family grow up in the woods. To me the land means "Family," and for that reason it is dear to my heart.

 

 
 

A Long Dry Spring 2011
by Elaine Knight - posted 05/27/11

It has been a very dry Spring in south Alabama, but after a slight shower last evening, the garden is fresh and clean this morning.  Southeast Alabama has suffered a drought for the past three years.  The rain goes either north or south, but we have so much to be thankful for.........no tornadoes.  I enjoyed taking a few photos this morning of plants that amaze me because of their ability to survive the lack of rain, the strong dry winds, and the sandy/clay soil with little mulch.  The veges also continue to amaze me; the peas are blooming and the corn is tasselling.  We do water every day, but our garden still shows stress.   I continue to work my beds, amending the soil (which can be very expensive), building a few raised beds for better drainage, fertilizing and watering; but I am about to decide that mulch, mulch, and more mulch is the key to success. 

The daylily is one plant that survives the heat and drought better than most plants.  Eventhough the blooms only last for a day, the gardener is rewarded every day during the blooming season with new blooms.  And in the late Summer/early Fall the plants revive themselves; the foliage becomes a dark rich green color.  Here are a few of my daylilies that were planted late last summer.  They have bloomed and bloomed, and they still have buds that have not opened.  The foliage is not as pretty as I would like for it to be, but I think that is because of the dry heat.

  

            

The Shasta Daisy is another one of my favorites;

it is very tough and multiplies for an extra bonus.

These beauties also make a very pretty arrangement to take indoors. 

I took this picture of the hibiscus that a friend gave to me;

the heat will stress it and it will wilt real quick,

but I put it on my screen porch where it only gets morning sun,

and it has bloomed and bloomed.

I love roses and the Mermaid is one of my favorites;

it is not a great bloomer and blooms later than my other roses,

but it has a large flower and the foliage is a rich green. 

The heat does not seem to bother it, and it doesn't show stress.

 Pictures of the garden; the corn is tasselling and the peas are blooming.  The tomatoes and cucumbers have been small so far, but they have a good flavor.

 

 

 

Various shots of the garden on a hot,dry day in early June. 

We had very little rain in the Winter and only two slight showers

since the tornado in Tuscaloosa.The weather has been a real challenge

this Spring; but being a gardener, I have to keep on planting, watering, 

mulching and praying for a rainy day.  Happy Gardening.  

                       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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COMMENTS

Jean McWeeney - 06/27/2011

Your daylilies are gorgeous! It certainly has been a tough spring and now a tough summer. I hope all your veggies make it - they look really good here!
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Elaine Knight (Troy, AL 36081) - 06/28/2011

Thanks Jean; We have had a few showers since these pics were made. The garden has done pretty good w/o rain; many peas, and we are still waiting on the corn......Tomatoes, cucumbers, squash are OK......small fruit, but I pick most every day. As I said in the article mulch helps, and we continue to pray for more rain....Elaine
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